Researchers give a robot the ability to control a person's arm (video)

Human-machine interaction just got a bit more... interesting. Researchers from France's Montpellier Laboratory of Informatics, Robotics, and Microelectronics have demonstrated a new technique that allows a robot to control a person's arm in order to accomplish a task together -- yes, you read that right. As you might expect, that's still being described as a proof of concept, and the current setup simply consists of a set of electrodes that are attached to the arm and used to direct the person to drop a ball into a hoop the robot is holding -- to keep things on the up and up, the human participants were blindfolded during the tests, which were successful. According to the researchers, however, that is just the beginning. They eventually see similar techniques being used in rehabilitation, and in other robot assistants that could help people with disabilities accomplish basic tasks -- they further note that this technique has the added benefit of being simpler and less expensive than standalone robotic systems. Video is after the break.